free/clear hips: do legs touch the bar

Status
Not open for further replies.

gymgal

Well-Known Member
Gold Membership
Proud Parent
Aug 22, 2008
4,292
I know hips can't touch and the body has to be free toward the end as you go over the bar, but can the thighs touch the bar as you circle under the bar? Watching videos of routines, I see it both ways and can't tell if it's technically correct and whether there are deductions for it. I tend to see true clear body during free hip handstands but the not so much in the level 6 skill.
 
B

Billy

Guest
I don't think any part of the body can touch the bar during the free hip.
 

gymnastbeth

Moderator/Gymnast
Former Gymnast
Sep 16, 2009
1,008
99% sure legs can't touch the bar. Probably the reason it seems like a lot of level 6's do it is because a LOT of level 6s don't have strong clear hips. When a gymnast has a "true" clear hip to handstand, they are already very proficient at them, so they don't need to touch their legs to do the skill.

I think the level 6's at my gym mentioned at one point that they used their thighs to "bounce" off the bar to make their clear hips not back hip circles... Yikes...
 

JBS

Administrator
Staff member
Gold Membership
Coach
Former Gymnast
Proud Parent
Sep 3, 2005
6,563
Wisconsin
There was actually some discussion of this at congress this year. One very successful coach lecturing this year teaches all clear hips with the legs on the bar. He had 4 full ride athletes in the last 2 years. I would also like to know if there is a deduction for this. Technically...the hips are clear of the bar if the legs just above the knees are touching the bar.
 

gymnastbeth

Moderator/Gymnast
Former Gymnast
Sep 16, 2009
1,008
There was actually some discussion of this at congress this year. One very successful coach lecturing this year teaches all clear hips with the legs on the bar. He had 4 full ride athletes in the last 2 years. I would also like to know if there is a deduction for this. Technically...the hips are clear of the bar if the legs just above the knees are touching the bar.

Thinking about it, having the whole leg graze the bar actually makes sense, if the gymnast is going to handstand. From the cast to the drop, they bring their ankles up and very close to the bar, then shift to handstand. I'm also interested now to see if there is a deduction.
 

GetaGrip

Active Member
Jun 26, 2009
570
California
Personally I think it's easier and better technique not to use your legs, but if you can still have a high clearhip with your legs touching, than good for you. Mostly at my gym if you touch your legs it's going to be at horizontal. Also, we had a gymnast at our gym who did the "push off the bar with your hips to make it a clear hip" and they counted her clear hip as a backhip circle in one meet!
 

JBS

Administrator
Staff member
Gold Membership
Coach
Former Gymnast
Proud Parent
Sep 3, 2005
6,563
Wisconsin
Mostly at my gym if you touch your legs it's going to be at horizontal. Also, we had a gymnast at our gym who did the "push off the bar with your hips to make it a clear hip" and they counted her clear hip as a backhip circle in one meet!

It's very possible to pop a handstand after your legs have touched the bar.

If your hips touch the bar...it would be a hip circle automatically.

The question is if the legs are allowed to touch the bar in a clear hip or free hip.
 
Last edited:

ryantroop

Member
Sep 21, 2008
423
Illinois
Personally, I teach developmentally a touch "on the far side of the bar."

I feel this teaches a strong drop action, and a push on the bar for tension. After they get used to this, the "touch" tends to disappear as they get stronger and stronger..

I don't think a judge will take deductions for touching, unless it blatantly affects the skill and quality.
 

CoachTodd

Coach
Coach
Proud Parent
Nov 4, 2009
810
North Carolina
I'm pretty sure rubbing the bar is .3 off. This may have changed over the years. I teach it with no contact. Since the free hip can be broken down into angles, I'm confident it can be done just as easily without rubbing the bar if not more easily. I feel that if you contact the bar during the skill, you are taking away from the angles and replacing it with either speed or just pure muscle. I've see kids use one or both. When I asked another coach how he looked at clear hips and he showed me how he looked at the angles, it really got easier to teach.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 person

dunno

Banned
Banned
Coach
Former Gymnast
Proud Parent
Club Owner
Apr 28, 2009
9,292
depends on the body type. and specifically, how long the arms are.
 

Geoffrey Taucer

Admin
Gold Membership
Coach
Former Gymnast
Jan 21, 2007
4,413
Baltimore, MD
The key point in a free hip (ie the thing that makes it a free hip) to me isn't the push out at the end or even the lack of contact, it's the aggressive drop back in the beginning with the shoulders behind the bar. The further back the drop (and therefore the further the center of mass is from the bar on the way down), the more powerful the push out at the end will be.

With this in mind, I have trouble picturing any way of executing a free hip where the legs contact the bar without a pike in the hips -- which is (and should be) a deduction. That is, unless the gymnast has very long arms -- in such a case, I can see the bars lightly touching the thighs without sacrificing any other necessary parts of the skill.
 

JBS

Administrator
Staff member
Gold Membership
Coach
Former Gymnast
Proud Parent
Sep 3, 2005
6,563
Wisconsin
With this in mind, I have trouble picturing any way of executing a free hip where the legs contact the bar without a pike in the hips -- which is (and should be) a deduction. That is, unless the gymnast has very long arms -- in such a case, I can see the bars lightly touching the thighs without sacrificing any other necessary parts of the skill.

The coach speaking at congress this year teaches a pike in free hips. He then brought up several photos of powerful free hips and almost all of them were in a pike position when inverted. Like the photo here:

Are the Legs Allowed to Touch the Bar in a Clear Hip Circle? - The Chalk Bucket - Learn About Gymnastics
 

JBS

Administrator
Staff member
Gold Membership
Coach
Former Gymnast
Proud Parent
Sep 3, 2005
6,563
Wisconsin
I have started a new thread for the question of piking during a free hip:

http://www.chalkbucket.com/forums/skills-drills-forum/34453-free-hips-deduction-piking.html

Why start a new thread? Many times multiple questions and answers get mixed into a single thread here at The Chalk Bucket. By splitting each question to it's own thread...it is easier for others to find the answer to the question also. Google indexes each individual thread by thread URL (which is based on the thread title). Anyone searching Google for a free hip or clear hip piking deduction will be brought to the above thread very quickly.
 

fuzi

Coach
Coach
Former Gymnast
Gymnast
Judge
May 28, 2009
1,061
Region I
I was a at a coaching/judging clinic last weekend. No deductions for thighs (not hips) brushing the bar on the upswing.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 person

JBS

Administrator
Staff member
Gold Membership
Coach
Former Gymnast
Proud Parent
Sep 3, 2005
6,563
Wisconsin
I was a at a coaching/judging clinic last weekend. No deductions for thighs (not hips) brushing the bar on the upswing.

Thanks fuzi...that is interesting. I guess I have always just assumed that it would be a deduction.
 

fuzi

Coach
Coach
Former Gymnast
Gymnast
Judge
May 28, 2009
1,061
Region I
Apparently it is a recent judging clarification and they are working on making sure judges understand and apply deductions on clear hips appropriately, with the understanding that a light brush of the thighs on the upswing is not a deduction. That said, the consensus seems to be that a clear hip done further from the bar will have greater amplitude and it will be easier for the gymnasts to reach handstand. A gymnast who brushes her thighs on the upswing must do that much more work (and have that much more strength) in the shoulders to hit handstand, though it is an acceptable technique.
 

gymcoach34

Member
Apr 5, 2010
339
There was actually some discussion of this at congress this year. One very successful coach lecturing this year teaches all clear hips with the legs on the bar. He had 4 full ride athletes in the last 2 years. I would also like to know if there is a deduction for this. Technically...the hips are clear of the bar if the legs just above the knees are touching the bar.

I was at this lecture too... I used his hint of telling the kids they "should feel like they are falling off the bar" on the drop and then turn the candle over as well at using the thighs touching as a cue to open the shoulders and I had 3 kids do their clear hip to hs in the same workout- who knew???? Well worth the cost of congress for that one! I thought it was a GREAT lecture and I learned a lot.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 person

JBS

Administrator
Staff member
Gold Membership
Coach
Former Gymnast
Proud Parent
Sep 3, 2005
6,563
Wisconsin
I was at this lecture too... I used his hint of telling the kids they "should feel like they are falling off the bar" on the drop and then turn the candle over as well at using the thighs touching as a cue to open the shoulders and I had 3 kids do their clear hip to hs in the same workout- who knew???? Well worth the cost of congress for that one! I thought it was a GREAT lecture and I learned a lot.

Totally...I also had a couple of girls kick some big one's the day I got back from congress. I said the same thing to my wife about congress being completely worth it just for that.
 

natassia.noelle

Coach
Coach
Proud Parent
Gymnast
Sep 7, 2011
3
It specifically states in the level 6 routine text that the thighs are allowed to brush the bar in a clear hip. I checked after getting the John Geddart level 6 video where he teaches brushing the bar.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 person
Status
Not open for further replies.

New Posts